New operating room with 3-dimensional technology that takes modern robotic surgery to new levels

Henry Ford Hospital has designed and built a new operating room with 3-dimensional technology that takes modern robotic surgery to new levels.

Surgical teams are now performing robotic surgery for prostate cancer with enhanced efficiency, comfort and communication using this unique technology.

Aided by two 60-inch by 80-inch flat projection screens, advanced lighting, and a data monitoring and intercom system, the entire surgical team works in 3-D wearing special polarized glasses.

In traditional robotic surgery, only the surgeon, who sits at a remote console controlling tiny instruments, has a magnified view.

“This operating room is going to change the way operations are done. It is light years ahead of anything else that exists in the world,” says Mani Menon, M.D., director of Henry Ford’s Vattikuti Urology Institute.

“The benefit of everyone seeing in 3-D is they are all synchronized. Everybody sees the same thing and it increases surgical precision by a quantum leap.”

The enhanced technology also makes the operating room a powerful teaching tool, Dr. Menon says. Images from the operating room can be sent, in 3-D, anywhere in the world to help train other surgeons.

“When a pilot takes a 747 off the ground, even if he’s doing it for the first time, he’s practiced it 100 hours or 1,000 hours in a simulator. When a trainee does an operation, the 3-D screen virtually allows the assistants to do the same thing,”

Dr. Menon says.

Dr. Menon says the “enhanced” reality operating room at Henry Ford is being used primarily for urological surgery. But it will be used in the future for other specialized procedures like heart, bariatric, vascular and orthopedic surgeries.

“I think for precision work, when tissue handling is very important, when a millimeter makes a difference, 3-D brings us that benefit,” Dr. Menon says. “Surgery is something that should be delicate and precise. It should be more like painting than construction work. And this OR helps you paint your way through an operation.”

Currently, the operating room is being used to perform robot-assisted prostatectomy using the da Vinci™ computer-enhanced, minimally invasive surgery system.

Using a tiny camera at the end of one laparoscope, the surgeon can operate miniaturized instruments at the end of other laparoscopes, all from a remote console with a 3-D view. This allows the surgeon an unprecedented view of the surgical site. But up until now and the development of Henry Ford’s new OR, the surgeon at the console was the only member of the team with this unique view

Having performed more than 1,000 cases, the Vattikuti Urology Institute has performed more robot-assisted prostatectomies than any other hospital in the world.

With this procedure, the patient’s pain, blood loss, risk of incontinence, impotence and recovery time in the hospital and at home are significantly reduced. With traditional radical prostatectomy, people are usually in the hospital for between two and three days. With robotic prostatectomy, most patients are discharged one day after surgery.


  1. Sarah Sarah Philippines says:

    Is there any picture of this new operating room?

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
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